Josie Lopez
Curator, 516 ARTS

516 ARTS and partners present special guests Femme Frontera, a collective of six women filmmakers based in El Paso, Texas, who are dedicated to inspiring and empowering female filmmakers from both sides of the border. They will introduce their Short Films Showcase at The Guild Cinema on the subject of how women filmmakers are interacting with issues connected with the US-Mexico border, and they will give a Smart Device Filmmaking workshop at the National Hispanic Cultural Center.

Whether they are real or imaginary, physical or intangible, boundaries divide and disquiet in the well-told, deeply felt series of narrative and documentary shorts. Resisting stereotypical, hyper masculine depictions of the Latina experience that so often reduce characters of color to the status of flimsy cardboard cutouts, the directors of Femme Frontera prioritize feeling and style ahead of plot as they explore border experiences. As a collective, Femme Frontera, advocates for women’s voices through its annual showcase, media education, workshops and community outreach. The following films are featured in the showcase:

CHILD OF THE DESERT A military mother, who has just suffered the loss of her son, meets an undocumented immigrant in the West Texas desert and befriends him. Narrative short, directed by Iliana Sosa.

MEMORY BOX Julieta, age 19 and recently deceased, experiences the afterlife for the first time at a Day of the Dead celebration. Narrative short, directed by Angie Reza Tures.

LA CATRINA Grieving her husband’s death, a farm worker on the border becomes La Catrina and journeys to find him through the mythic landscape of the harvest. Narrative short, directed by Ilana Lapid.

OVERLAND Alone, undocumented, and in need of fast money, Noemi steps out of her comfort zone and becomes a “fantasy maid.” Overland is a story about exploitation, perseverance, and burning away the stereotypes that surround undocumented women. Narrative short, directed by Jazmin Harvey.

UNDOCUMENTED FREEDOM After nearly a decade of living in the shadows of the law, a man deported at the age of 19 for a non-violent drug offense seeks help with a federal attorney from New York who is ready to fight for his case...and for 11 million more. Documentary short, directed by Laura Bustillos Jáquez. THE

APPLESEED PROJECT A video anthology that captures the sound, personal, and story of women musicians from the borderlands-La Frontera. Narratives reflect the determination, heartbreak, and creativity of women richly talented and full of wisdom. Documentary short, directed by Jennifer Lucero.

These events are part of the series of public programs for The US-Mexico Border: Place, Imagination, and Possibility, a two part exhibition on view at 516 ARTS (through April 14, 2018) and the Albuquerque Museum (through April 15, 2018). For information about the full series of public programs around Albuquerque, visit, see the Digital Program Guide or visit